Tile flooring can be one of the most versatile and functional options when it comes to installing a reliable foundation in your home’s more “high maintenance” areas. Mud rooms, bathrooms, laundry rooms, kitchens, basements, along other spaces that are exposed to high traffic and increased moisture all require flooring that is able to withstand consistent wear and tear. Tiling is easy to install, lasts for a considerable amount of time, and best of all, is relatively easy to maintain and clean, making it a suitable choice for homeowners.
At Ashley Fine Floors, one of the most common questions our flooring experts receive when it comes to tile installation and maintenance is how to keep the grout between each section clean. Read on to learn how you can keep your grout clean, and ensure your tile floors look their best year round!
What is Grout
Simply put, grout helps hold your tiles in place and seals them against outside irritants. Grout is a cement based mixture that comes in two basic formulas: sanded and unsanded. Stylistically, you can look at having a mixture that matches or contrasts with your tiles depending on your preferences.
How Does it Get Dirty?
Unfortunately, grout tends to have a bit of a bad rap when it comes to looking “dingy” or weathered. The reason grouting has a tendency to collect dirt and grit, however, may surprise you: contrary to popular belief, the mixture is not waterproof, and is actually quite porous. This means that grout absorbs liquids and dirt over time, which can lead to a lacklustre appearance.
Combatting Build Up
The easiest way to keep your tile flooring looking fresh is to set a dedicated cleaning schedule to clear out your grout before grime builds up. Depending on the traffic volume of the room, number of pets in the household, seasonal challenges (mud, snow, dust), etc. the frequency with which you need to clean will vary. Once a month during typical periods often helps homeowners stay on top of any unsightly discolouration before it has a chance to set in too deep. Tips for cleaning include:
- Prevention, as with any type of flooring, is the best approach to avoiding dingy grout. Mop up any spills, muddy tracks, or excess moisture immediately, and speed or vacuum regularly.
- Select a neutral PH cleaner to avoid damage the adhesive that hold both the grouting and tiles in place, as well as any chemical reactions that may result in further staining.
- A common DIY mixture is: 3/4 cup hydrogen peroxide, 1/4 baking soda, 1TBSP dish soap. Gently scrub this into your grout and let sit for 5-10 minutes to loosen and dissolve any grease and grime. Rinse off with enough warm water to remove the mixture and quickly mop up any excess moisture.
- For advanced stains, chips, or other signs of significant wear and tear, it’s best to consult a professional.
Ready to get started with tiling? We can help! Ashley Fine Floors has been connecting Edmonton and area with leading flooring solutions for over 25 years. Contact our team today to learn more.